Sunday, 6 March 2016

Operation Outerwear: Red Spring Raincoat (Part 1)

Previously, on coat-making I said I had put together the PDF for Lekala 4182, a short coat with an interesting sleeve detail. However, I was extremely unimpressed by the fact that (a) the welt pockets aren't marked on the pattern; and (b) the sleeves are totally unlike the pattern/technical drawing in terms of length and fixing them was not going to be straightforward. These are not insoluble problems but I didn't really feel like expending the effort to solve them (and I actually don't think I should have to in the case of the welt pocket thing). Also I have to admit that these problems/differences made me have doubts about the pattern overall.

In the end I went with a resounding nope! on the Lekala pattern, and then immediately pulled out my original list of coat pattern possibilities. Top of the list was Burda 02-2009-133, and I duly got on with tracing it out on Wednesday evening and Thursday.

Burda 02-2009-133, images from
(Is it weird I have favourite issues of Burda? Because 02-2009 is an AMAZING issue, I swear I want to make about half the patterns in it. This one wasn't even in my top 3 on the list of Must Makes from this issue!)

OK, I admit it's not the most exciting coat in the world when seen on the mannequin but the pattern met my requirements in that it's a straightforward sew with some nice little details like the splits at the side and wide sleeve facings so you can wear the cuffs folded back. Also, not that it's ever a good indicator what with all the pinning of garments and airbrushing that Burda does to the models, but I really like how the coat looks in the modelled shot.

This is a Plus pattern (size 44 to 52) and I am working from pretty much a straight 44 with just a few adjustments. Just to check that nothing was going too wrong, I went ahead and made a super quick and dirty upper bodice and one sleeve only muslin:

Muslin of Burda 02-2009-133 - upper bodice and 1 sleeve only. Alas, Flossie is much perkier than I, if you're wondering why the darts are so low. (She is also overall much shorter from shoulder to waist, so it's not just the dreadful effect of gravity!)
The fit seemed good for what I want in a raincoat -- I tried it on over layers including a light-weight sweater, which is the most common type of clothing I'd normally wear with it. This is a coat for spring, so it doesn't really have to go over my heaviest jumpers (though it probably would, just not as comfortably). Also, in weird related outcomes from this muslin: trying this collar-less muslin on made me REALLY want a short edge-to-edge jacket/blazer with a high round neckline, even though it's not a look I've really gone for historically. I have a couple of patterns in my collection I could try but nothing in my fabric stash is really speaking to me as a possibility at the moment.

On Friday I cut out my outer shell fabric, and on Saturday I fused interfacing for what felt like hours, ugh, one of my least favourite jobs. That left me all ready for a Sunday of Epic Sewing (with Occasional Laundry Interludes, since housework does not go away just because you want to sew all day), and here is where I got to:

Burda 02-2009-133: outer shell complete (no lining, buttons, and the hem is still down)
Basically, that's the whole outer shell done! The hem has not been turned up yet and obviously there are no buttons etc. I haven't remotely started the lining yet -- I don't even have the lining pattern pieces sorted out, let alone cutting out or sewing anything. I think I'll probably try to prep the lining this week and finish the coat up next weekend.

So far I absolutely LOVE it! I'm optimistic about the likely finished fit, the pattern went together beautifully, the fabric is ultra easy to work with, and all is happiness and joy, in short. Let's hope that the horror of working with a slippery lining fabric doesn't take the shine off!


  1. Looks fantastic! I love the colour! Red coats are so chic :)

    1. Thanks! I'm really pleased with it!

  2. Love the color and the styling--so classy.

  3. YAY!!! It looks so good!! I cannot wait to see it finished. So glad you went with a Burda.

    1. I am so pleased with it! Also really glad I went with the Burda pattern and didn't try to keep going with that dubious Lekala pattern. The more I use Burda the more I love it.